What is Defensive Driving? - showing hands on steering wheel and view of car dash

What is Defensive Driving?

Most of us are good drivers; we follow the rules of the road and we ensure our vehicles have been properly maintained. However, sometimes it can be the elements surrounding us and the outside forces acting against us that can cause accidents. This is where defensive driving comes into play.

It may seem like common sense to drive defensively, we’ve all heard it before. But do you actually know what defensive driving is and how to make sure that you’re abiding by its definition? Here are some defensive driving tips on how to take the proper precautions when getting behind the wheel and help make the roads a little safer.

  • BE PRESENT
    Concentrate on the road and what’s in front of you while you’re driving. Do not text and drive or do anything that could distract you. Also, be conscious of feeling tired or upset; our emotions can greatly affect our driving.
  • MAKE YOUR CAR VISIBLE
    Utilize the tools that your vehicle gives you. Make sure your turn signals, brake lights, and headlights are always in working condition. Making yourself visible to other drivers is one of the most important things to consider when driving defensively.
  • BE CONSTANTLY AWARE
    Constantly keep your eyes moving. Make sure you’re continuously checking your side mirrors and rearview mirror and scanning the road for any sign of pedestrians, construction, or other potential dangers.
  • USE THE 3-SECOND RULE
    Maintain a safe distance. Pick a fixed point on the road in front of you. Watch when the car ahead of you passes that point, then count for three seconds. If you get to that object before you’ve finished counting, you’re driving too close. This rule helps you to keep a safe distance (regardless of your speed) in case you need to suddenly stop.
  • ADAPT TO ROAD CONDITIONS AND WEATHER CHANGES
    Little changes in the weather, or a detour because of construction can have major effects on our driving, even though they seem like minor changes. Be sure to go a little slower while driving consciously.
  • KNOW THE RULES OF THE ROAD
    It never hurts to brush up on your road safety rules. Check out ICBC’s latest manual here.

By taking the time to consciously drive and be on the defensive, you can ensure safer road conditions for yourself and all drivers.

If you need help with any collision repairs or repair services to your turn signals, brake lights, or headlights, any one of our Quality Assured Collision shops is ready to help. We like to do our part to make sure your vehicle is road-ready and you are always safe.

Safe driving!

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